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Forget Dry January With These 8 Wine And Food Pairings

By Ian Devereux White | January 6, 2020 | Food & Drink

How nice would it be to show up to a party with a bottle of wine that pairs perfectly with the meal? Or, if you’re playing host, to have wines proudly placed on your celebratory table that match the evening’s menu? No need to rely on chance this year, my friends. These pairings will make you look like a pro.


Dish Mashed potatoes
Silverado Vineyards
Tasting notes
You want a light, zesty wine like sauvignon blanc for a heavy food like mashed potatoes. This crisp, refreshing SB has notes of citrus and lemon, which cut through the buttery potatoes and add a gentle, harmonious hint of fruit to the hearty staple. Miller Ranch sauvignon blanc, $25, Spec’s

Dish Crab
Wine Rodney Strong Vineyards
Tasting notes
You’ll dip your crab in butter or some delicious sauce, so choose a wine that has enough sweetness and acid to marry with the crab and sauce. Upshot white blend is light, bright and has flavors of melon, stone fruit and lots of minerality, so it’s a natural fit. Serve chilled or even cold. Upshot white blend, $20, Spec’s;

Dish Roasted vegetables
West + Wilder
Tasting notes
Even if Mom isn’t looking, you should eat your veggies. They’re good for you, and can serve as a tasty side or main. If you’re looking for the ideal partner for that vibrant kale or gorgeous plate of carrots, bring a sparkling rosé. West + Wilder’s playful pink has a hint of sweetness that will complement the healthy stuff, and the bubbles will enhance earthy flavors. Sparkling rosé, $20, Favorite Brands

Dish Halibut and sugar cookies
Tasting notes
A rich and balanced chardonnay will pair nicely with halibut and other tender white fish. Migration’s is vibrant and silky, and pairs well with buttery or citrusy sauces (for red sauces, go with a medium red like pinot noir or a red blend). This cheery chard will also balance the sweetness of a sugar cookie without stealing the show. Try dipping the cookie in the wine if it’s got enough icing to hold it together. Sonoma Coast chardonnay, $40, Total Wine & More


Dish Cheese, nuts and charcuterie
Flambeaux Wine
Tasting notes
If snacks and appetizers are on the table, then the fun is just getting started. Choose a wine that’s crowd-pleasing and full of life, like zinfandel. Flambeaux’s is a good pick because it has plenty of fruit, gentle complexity and balance, and is light enough to be paired with a variety of cheeses, nuts and meats. Dry Creek Valley zinfandel, $40

Dish Bacon-wrapped filet mignon
Louis M. Martini
Tasting notes
It’s no secret filet and cabernet sauvignon go together, but which cab? Martini’s is a clear choice because it’s full-bodied but not overpowering, so it lets the steak shine. It also has enough tannin and acid to balance out the salt and fat of the bacon. Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon, $40, H-E-B Central Market

Dish Lamb
Tasting notes
Lamb is a gamy meat that begs for a big bold red like Aperture’s red blend. Lighter than a cabernet sauvignon but still full of dark fruit and cocoa, this silky wine will go well with the heavy texture and fatty flavors of the meat and will bring some nice spice to the party too. Right Bank red blend, $55

Dish Salmon
Tasting notes
Salmon calls for a bright, acidic red to cut the fat and fishy flavor. This juicy, ripe pinot has flavors of cherry and raspberry that act as a glaze for your bite. The earthiness of the wine mingles with the salt and sea of the fish. Les Pommiers pinot noir, $60, Houston Wine Merchant

Tags: Wine

Photography by: From top: Jeff Siepman/Unsplash; Lefteris Kallergis/Unsplash